Motherhood, My Story
I'm lucky enough to be blessed with two happy, healthy children, one who is seven years old, fiercely stubborn, independent, imaginative and cheeky; just the right amount of each. And the little one who is seventeen months, who is a complete pickle, mischevious and loving.
I've never considered myself maternal, but I know that it's more because I don't feel confident around lots of children, rather than a reflection on my relationship with my own.
In fact, I am probably considered very maternal, being a herbalist I'm quite 'earth mother' (read: hippy) but I'm also realistic. When speaking to a new mum friend of mine, a few points arose from my experiences which I decided that not enough people talk about, but that are perfectly healthy and should not come accompanied by a side order of guilt...over the next few blogs I'll be talking about some of my hurdles.
The truth is, that motherhood can be lonely and isolating. Initially with a newborn, the world and his wife want to visit, cooing over the baby and bringing cards and gifts. By six weeks old, people seem to have forgotten you and the offers of 'call if you need anything' seem too long gone to cash in. Your old friends aren't all at the same place in their lives and right now, making new ones when you're tired and vulnerable does not exactly sound like fun. After having my eldest son I discovered that there was very little support geared towards the new mum. I had to fight with my local PCT to get details of a 'first times mum' group which I was desperate to join, firstly being told I had to wait as they were all full up, then later that it wouldn't have been relevant for us (by the time a space became available, he was several months old compared to all the four-week-old babies). Anyway, I fought to go and thoroughly enjoyed it, in fact I met one of my very best friends at this group and so I was glad I went.
I'd strongly advise that you go to one of these groups, or similarly breast feeding workshops, baby massage...anything which gets you to meet other mums locally, ones who can meet up for a cuppa or keep you company on long walks round the park trying to settle a fussy baby.
Speak to your health visitor, look online for your nearest Sure Start Children's Centre , check out websites like Netmums and even Facebook have local groups now, for you to find more support and people who are probably feeling exactly the same as you (which, I might add, is normal!)
There are courses which cost money, if you have it then great, but the free ones are definitely worth a look.
If you or someone you know may be suffering from post-natal depression, then don't leave it untreated. Speak to your GP or health visitor and if you'd like advice from a herbal perspective then please get in touch. There is absolutely no shame in admitting that things aren't all ok.
Next time, I'll be blogging further about this - far too much to cover for now.
Much love xx